"Great staff awful building and management"

About: Royal Sussex County Hospital

I can't fault the doctors at the hospital but the centralised outsourced outpatients bookings service is dire, with long delays to assessment as a result. My son was referred to paediatric endocrinology with a serious auto immune condition and booking couldn't tell me when he would be seen (it was an urgent referral at the request of the consultant). There is clearly not enough capacity, and the way systems and management processes are run really doesn't help. I hope the new chief exec helps turn it around but for now I will ask to be referred elsewhere. So far due to the helpful medical secretary we have had one brief appointment with little shared decision making or explanations about my sons condition or treatment choices, and no idea when the next appt will be. It's been very stressful and I have relied on medical friends for advice.

We have also tried to use paediatric ent firstly for grommets and secondly for allergy. We have had to give up and go private as the waits were so appallingly long. I as shocked as I lived in london until a few years ago where services where so much better!

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Response from Royal Sussex County Hospital

Dear Emma

Thank you for taking the time to write this review and I am sorry to hear about the delays in treatment of your son, these are clearly not acceptable. I have discussed this with the Directorate manager for children, she agrees that waiting times for certain paediatric sub-specialities, including ENT and allergy are far from ideal (around 6 months for each) and she tells me that they are working both internally through business planning and externally with commissioners in our local CCGs to try to redesign pathways and create additional capacity.

In addition in recent weeks we have started publishing our waiting times to GPs, in order that they can make parents aware of the waiting times, and can choose accordingly whether they wish to be referred to us.

So, there is work being undertaken to address these issues however I know that none of this makes what happened to your son any better. If you would like to discuss this further with PALS, they can be contacted either on 01273 523284 or pals@bsuh.nhs.uk

Best wishes

Caroline Davies

Deputy Chief Nurse

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